"The Dalai Lama's approach points towards slow growth and maturity. He believes in the tremendous, perhaps even unlimited power of the mind -- but a mind that has been systematically trained, focused, concentrated, a mind tempered by years of experience and sound reasoning. It takes a long time to develop the behavior and habits of mind that contribute to our problems. It takes an equally long time to establish the new habits that bring happiness." [page 231]
"It's important to make a clear distinction in your mind between your ideals and the standards by which you judge your progress. ... Holding full Enlightenment as your ideal of achievement is not an extreme. But expecting to achieve it quickly, here and now, becomes an extreme. Using that as a standard instead of your ideal causes you to become discouraged and completely lose hope when you don't quickly achieve Enlightenment." [page 232]
"Some people suggest that anger, hatred, and other negative emotions are a natural part of our mind. They feel that since these are a natural part of our makeup, there is no way to really change these mental states. But that is wrong. Now, for example, all of us are born in an ignorant state. In this sense, ignorance is also quite natural. ... If we leave ourselves in a 'natural state' without making an effort to dispel it, then the opposing factors or forces of education and learning do not come naturally. ... Through proper training we can reduce our negative emotions and increase positive states of mind such as love, compassion, and forgiveness." [pages 233-234]
He says that these negative states of our mind can be thought of as parts of ourselves with which we can do battle. Buddhist doctrine gives three reasons for believing that this battle can be won: (1) negative states of mind are based on illusion, while the positive states have a solid basis in reality; (2) the positive states can act as antidotes to the negative states; and (3) the underlying nature of consciousness is pure, it is the "Buddha nature". "Negative mental states are not an intrinsic part of our minds; they are transient obstacles that obstruct the expression of our underlying natural state of joy and happiness." [page 242] These three points are actually quite similar to the key doctrines of Christian Science: that the perception of evil is fundamentally an error on the part of the perceiver, the underlying nature of reality being without evil. The goal of eliminating negative states of mind also has a history in the West, most notably among preChristian schools of philosophy like the Epicureans and the Stoics.